Barb’s Journey

5 months in…

We’re running a series, the personal reflections of Barb Richards, who left radio earlier this year to begin a completely new career. Each month, this first year, Barb is sharing what this feels like, good and bad, and she is reminding all of is that it is possible to reinvent yourself — and that it’s so worth it.


Another month has very quickly rolled through and the new job has now taken on a level of comfort. The other day I was at a staff meeting and looked around at these talented individuals I work with and thought, these guys are now my friends. I am a part of their team and they no longer question the role I have with them at this organization.

I recently took some time off and spent it with my sister in North Carolina. She’s a woman of great faith and utilizes her faith in her everyday life. She is currently between jobs and is handling it all so well. I wanted to share some of her insights this month.

She lost her job due to a management change this summer and it has been very challenging for her to find a new job. She is 62, acts 42, and knows social media like a 32-year-old! Yet she is finding that, to many, she is irrelevant because of her age. But she is not giving up. Actually, that thought adds to her resolve and determination to prove them wrong. She is a woman on a mission!

Every day she gets up at 8 a.m. and goes to her job — which is finding a job. She searches and searches online and will apply for anything that is remotely related to her field of work. She used to be very specific and had a narrow circle of jobs to apply for but now that circle is wider. She figures once she gets into a company she can work her way into a more desirable position. She is focusing on one goal right now and that is to get a job with benefits.

She customizes her resume for each specific job opening using the language that is in the job description posting. The cover letter gives her another chance to personalize those qualities she is bringing to the job.

She keeps a calendar so she can follow up with job prospects, and sends a “Thank You” note within 24 hours of her interviews. She follows up at 2 weeks, 4 weeks, 6 weeks, and 8 weeks. She knows that companies take forever to make a decision. A job she applied for in June and interviewed for in August has just now followed up with her and asked for a second interview.

When she calls, she reminds them about her resume, that she is still available, and most importantly, she asks the really tough question: ‘Is there an objection to hiring me? And if so, will you share that with me and allow me a chance to respond.’ My sister has guts!

And my sister has great faith. When we talk about her current situation, which is not good, she believes there is a reason she is where she is and that down the road this trial and tribulation will reveal the reasons she’s had to struggle.

She is never in a bad mood or down about anything. She very much believes everything will work out just fine, as long as she doesn’t give up — perhaps not as she had hoped or expected, but in a way that will help her grow. She is smiling all the way through.

If you’re struggling to find a job, I hope you can be a person of great faith, like my sister. It sure seems to make life a whole lot easier when we understand and accept that there is a plan.


If I can be a resource for you, please don’t hesitate to ask. And if you know someone who needs a little bit of encouragement, reach out today and lift their spirits a bit.

It’s always the perfect time of year for that gift.